Best answer: On a practical level, you can't use the Philips Hue Bloom without a Philips Hue Bridge. While plugging it in turns the Bloom on, it doesn't even have a power switch of its own, making use of the Bloom inconvenient at best if you ever want to turn it off.

You can plug in the Hue Bloom to turn it on, but beyond that, you'll need the Hub

In the most technical sense, no, a Hue Bridge isn't required in order to operate your Hue Bloom. That being said, once plugged in, the Bloom has no independent method of being turned off other than unplugging it. As far as I'm concerned, being able to be turned off and on without having to unplug is basic functionality in a lamp. Therefore, because you can't perform the basic task of turning off a light without unplugging it, you'll need to pick up the Philips Hue Bridge if you really want to use a Hue Bloom.

You also have to consider how the Bloom is most often used. This isn't a normal table lamp. The Hue Bloom is meant as an accent light. It's often paired with entertainment systems or video game setups to provide additional ambiance. But even if the basic off-white glow of the Bloom was enough for you, if it's plugged in behind, say, a TV cabinet, then you'll have to get behind your cabinet every time you want to turn it off. Now ask yourself: is that really something you want to do?

The Philips Hue Bridge enables all of the best features of the Bloom

Outside of basic functionality, the Hue Bridge also lets you use every great feature about the Bloom. On top of changing colors through the app, you can set up timers, create a wake-up light, build custom scenes, integrate the Bloom into a HomeKit setup, and even use voice control through an Amazon Echo or Google Assistant.

Through the Bridge, you can connect Hue Bloom to products from companies like Razer and Logitech, or set up automations through a service like IFTTT.

Our pick

Philips Hue Bloom

A great way to colorfully accent your space.

The Philips Hue Bloom provides a great way to accent your space, whether you're using it to better immerse yourself in your entertainment or simply highlight an area of a room.

For additional features

Philips Hue Bridge

Control and connection for your Hue setup.

The Philips Hue Bridge unlocks the full potential of the Hue Bloom, giving you a choice of 16 million vibrant colors for your accent light, the ability to control it with your voice, and much more.

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